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Cassio Ferrigno

Executive Editor

Amy Kapatkin

General Editor

Noel Moens

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42-C3 Complex fracture with nonreconstructible wedges


42-C3 are complex fractures with non-reconstructible wedges and no direct contact between the main two fragments. They often have a high degree of comminution.


42-C3 fractures are high-energy fractures often caused by a vehicular trauma, fall from height or gunshot.

Because of the comminution and the nature of the trauma, severe damage to the soft tissues is expected.

In these fractures, it is generally not possible and not recommended to attempt rebuilding the bony column. Therefore, indirect reduction techniques and preservation of the soft tissues are considered mandatory.

42-C3 type fractures have a fractured fibula.



42-C fractures are generally caused by high energy trauma, often road traffic accidents or gunshot wounds.

General considerations

42-C type fractures are complex diaphyseal fractures. They differ from the B-Type fractures by the fact that, once reconstructed, the two main fragments do not have direct contact with each other.

The fracture classification by definition states that B1, B2, C1 and C2 fracture are anatomically reconstructible fractures, whereas B3 and C3 are not reconstructible.

Note: B1, B2, C1 and C2 fractures, depending on the sizes of the fragments, may best be managed like a non-reconstructible fracture.

Clinical signs

Clinical signs observed in 42-C fractures are:

  • Edema of the region
  • Abnormal movement in the tibia shaft
  • Pain
  • Non weight bearing on the limb
  • Soft tissue damage


Craniocaudal and lateral radiographic views are needed.